67% health workers, 59% other frontline workers given Covid-19 vaccine in in J-K
- On Saturday, the Centre asked all the states and union territories to closely monitor the trajectory of Covid infections to prevent surge in cases and assiduously expedite vaccination of priority groups.
Jammu and Kashmir has vaccinated two-thirds of its health care workers while 59% of other front-line workers from security, revenue and municipalities have also been given vaccines against Covid-19, officials said.
According to the government spokesperson, Jammu and Kashmir chief secretary, B V R Subrahmanyam who attended a meeting to review the public health response to Covid-19 chaired by Union cabinet secretary Rajiv Gauba on Saturday, said that that in J-K 67% of healthcare workers and 59% of frontline workers have been immunized during the initial stages of the vaccination drive. Arrangements are also in place to incorporate the third prioritized group in the upcoming days.
Gauba had asked all the states and union territories to closely monitor the trajectory of Covid infections to prevent surge in cases and assiduously expedite vaccination of priority groups. Chief secretaries of some other states participated in the meeting.
Subrahmanyan informed the meeting that Jammu and Kashmir is conducting mandatory universal tests on all incoming travelers.
He said that Jammu and Kashmir saw a 40% surge in weekly cases with travellers contributing to 2/3rd of all the positive cases. “In Srinagar district alone 50% of recorded positive cases were travellers,” Subrahmanyan was quoted as saying.
The government spokesman did not say which week the chief secretary was referring to and to which it was comparing.
However when HT compiled the government’s Covid-19 data for the current month, it found that the surge was not 40% but only around 21%. The data reveals that the UT recorded 403 cases in the first week of February, 432 cases in the second week, 526 cases in the third week and 574 cases in the last week. In terms of percentage, the surge was 7% from first week to second, 21% from second week to third week and 9% from third to fourth week.
Dr Qazi Haroon, officer on special duty with the health department to assist the government with corona mitigation efforts and state immunization officer, did not respond to calls from HT. Calls to director health, Kashmir, Samir Mattoo did not connect.
The government spokesman said that the chief secretary Subrahmanyan stressed that through concerted efforts the government is consistently monitoring the Covid trajectory among the local population with a special focus on districts with higher tourist footfalls.
Currently, the bed occupancy in the designated Covid hospitals is less than 4% with approximately 100 patients admitted to health care institutes that have been prepared to accommodate 3000 patients. “In the given scenario, the situation in Jammu and Kashmir is by and large comfortable and under control,” Subrahmanyam said.
The chief secretaries of Chhattisgarh, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Punjab, Telangana, and West Bengal also participated in the meeting.